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Thread: Astoria Development

  1. #16
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    Nowadays, Manhattan's look like this:


  2. #17

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    Cant you see the genius in making one colour snake up the building?

  3. #18
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    Green(er) power plant coming to Queens


    By Erik Engquist
    April 29.2008 2:55PM

    Plans for a new 500-megawatt power plant in Queens were approved Tuesday by the New York Power Authority.

    The natural gas-burning facility in Astoria, which will provide enough electricity to serve the equivalent of a half-million homes, will substantially reduce airborne emissions by replacing energy supplied by aging, high-polluting plants.

    Authority trustees gave Astoria Energy a green light to build the plant at a waterfront site by authorizing a 20-year supply contract. The company will sell power from the new plant to city and state agencies, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, and the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, pending final negotiations of the contract and approval from the governmental customers.

    The project enjoys the support of environmental groups, business organizations and construction trade associations. The plant will be built next to Astoria Energy’s 500-megawatt plant on Steinway Street, a mile west of La Guardia Airport. The existing plant, completed in 2006 on a 23-acre brownfield site, uses half of the capacity allowed by a license granted in 2001. It supplies Consolidated Edison.

    The new plant will consume 30% less fuel than a conventional power plant and use hot exhaust normally lost in the combustion process to produce additional electricity.

    “We think it’s a good project,” says Ashok Gupta, air and energy program director at the Natural Resources Defense Council. “It will mean less pollution, lower electricity bills.”

    Adds Marcia Bystryn, executive director of the New York League of Conservation Voters: “You’re not going to have to rely, during peak use, on facilities that are really dirty.”

    Astoria Energy was selected from among 30 energy suppliers that responded last fall to a request for proposals issued by the Power Authority.

    © 2008 Crain Communications, Inc.

  4. #19
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    A Big New York City Movie Studio Is Getting Bigger


    An architect’s rendering of the Kaufman Astoria Studios in Queens, after its expansion.


    By JANE L. LEVERE
    Published: June 11, 2008

    Kaufman Astoria Studios, one of New York City’s three largest movie studios, is moving ahead with a major expansion plan, nine years after it was announced.

    The studio, in the Astoria section of Queens, will break ground this fall on a $20 million building, with an 18,000-square-foot soundstage and 22,000 square feet of support space, on a plot of land diagonally across 36th Street from its current building, which is between 34th and 35th Avenues.

    Eventually, the studio intends to shut off 36th Street and erect a gate to create a studio lot — a compound with indoor and outdoor sets — and to construct a tower that would combine a hotel and office space directly behind the new soundstage.

    Astoria Studios is not the only New York movie studio that is expanding: Two years ago, Silvercup Studios, in Long Island City, Queens, announced that it would build a $1 billion complex on the East River waterfront, south of the Queensboro Bridge. It is to have eight new soundstages, production and support space, two towers with 1,000 apartments, an office tower and stores.

    Construction has been delayed, however, by problems involving the removal of generators, owned by the New York Power Authority, on the site. Stuart Match Suna, Silvercup Studios’ president, said he hoped this matter would be resolved in time for work to begin next year.

    The newest of the big three studios, the four-year-old Steiner Studios, is renovating a 289,000-square-foot building adjacent to its current soundstages in the Brooklyn Navy Yard, for use as production and office space. It also announced last November that it had joined forces with the Navy Yard to transform a 20-acre segment of the yard into a media and entertainment center that would also contain a studio lot.

    All the development is intended to take advantage of tax incentives offered by the city and state governments.

    To lure film production away from other states and Canada, the New York State Legislature four years ago approved a 10 percent tax credit on certain production costs, primarily for blue-collar technicians and crew members, and a 5 percent credit from New York City. These tax breaks — which are applied toward state and city income taxes — were sweetened in April, when the Legislature tripled the state tax incentive to 30 percent.

    George S. Kaufman, a developer of New York City office and showroom space, has leased Astoria Studios, which dates to the 1920s silent-picture era, from the city government since 1982. A 10-minute subway ride from Manhattan, the studio’s original 300,000-square-foot building holds six soundstages, a recording studio and 50,000 square feet of office space.

    The neighborhood around the original studio building has many related buildings, including a 63,000-square-foot loft building, at 35th Avenue between 37th and 38th Streets, that Mr. Kaufman converted to offices five years ago. Directly across 35th Avenue is a multiplex theater.

    Other buildings in the neighborhood also have links to the creative arts. The Museum of the Moving Image, across 36th Street from the original studio building, is undergoing a $65 million renovation and expansion.

    In addition, the Frank Sinatra School of the Arts, a high school established in 2001, will move next January into a new building on 35th Avenue between 35th and 36th Streets, on land also previously leased by Astoria Studios.

    Astoria Studios announced plans to build a new soundstage and support space in 1999, but Hal G. Rosenbluth, its president, said it had delayed going forward because “as 9/11 happened, some of our financing came into question.” He added: “Production tax credits later came into play, and the city was able to resurrect some of the financing that was set earlier.”

    Mr. Kaufman said Astoria Studios would embark on the public review process required to “demap” 36th Street, in order to create a studio lot, once construction begins on the new soundstage in the fall. He estimated the lot would cost about $2 million.

    Later, he would like to construct the new hotel and office building behind the new soundstage. The tower is expected to be as big as 150,000 square feet and 18 stories high; this is now in the planning stage.

    Government officials and film industry observers generally laud Astoria Studios’ expansion plans. In the last month, the studio announced that it would be used for two new television series: ABC’s “Life on Mars,” about a time-traveling detective, and HBO’s “Last of the Ninth,” a police drama. A remake of “The Taking of Pelham One Two Three,” originally made in 1974, is currently being produced there.

    “There is a growing competitive awareness that the space you are offering for TV and film production needs to be upgraded in quantity and upgraded in quality,” said Rosemary Scanlon, associate professor of economics at the Real Estate Institute of New York University and former chief economist of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey.

    Ms. Scanlon estimates that television and film production is responsible for $6.6 billion of the total $21.2 billion generated by the arts in New York’s economy.

    She said Astoria Studios’ plans for mixed-use development could “help offset the risk of putting investment in soundstages.” She said: “Once you build the facility, then it’s a marketing process. Studio space is like inventory; you have to market it every time it becomes vacant.”

    Pat Swinney Kaufman, executive director of the New York State Governor’s Office for Motion Picture and Television Development, said the film industry “can absolutely absorb” the expansions by the three movie studios. (Ms. Kaufman is not related to George S. Kaufman.)

    Michael N. Gianaris, a Democratic state assemblyman from Queens, predicted the new development would be “an integral part of the continued success of Long Island City and Astoria. It’s an area of the city growing by leaps and bounds; many of us believe it will be the next big business district for the city.”

    Copyright 2008 The New York Times Company

  5. #20
    Forum Veteran Tectonic's Avatar
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    Can anyone identify this building going up in what looks like Astoria, Queens. This a shot from northern Roosevelt Is.


  6. #21
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    Yes, that is 11-24 31st Ave (bet. 12 St and Vernon Blvd).

    It is located on the back (parking/open) lot of the former Adirondack Furniture Co.

    It is 20 stories with 80 units. More from A Fine Blog here.

  7. #22

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    1
    Last edited by directone12; September 17th, 2008 at 10:05 AM.

  8. #23

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    NY Times

    Striking a New Chord


    Chang W. Lee/The New York Times
    RETUNED IN ASTORIA
    The old Sohmer piano factory — which, along with the former Steinway & Sons plant, is starting a new life as a condominium.

    By JOYCE COHEN
    Published: October 17, 2008

    Sales have begun at the Pistilli Grand Manor condominium, erected in the early 1900s as one of the neighborhood’s two Steinway & Sons factories.

    It was later used as a warehouse for Stern’s, the former regional department-store chain. The 201 units, developed by the Pistilli Realty Group, include studios, one- and two-bedrooms, with an average cost of around $440 per square foot.

    The building has garnered online criticism for its relatively low-end fixtures. “We used a moderate kitchen and appliances,” said Joseph Pistilli, the developer. Otherwise, prices would be much higher, he said, adding that people can upgrade to their own taste — and that in this market, prices are negotiable.

    Nearly 20 units have been sold or are in contract, said the selling agent, Charles Sciberras of Realty Executives Today, who has posted pictures at pistilligrandmanor.com. A trilevel garage will have more than 300 parking spaces, renting for $150 to $200 a month.

    The units are sunny, as the windows “are the size of doors,” Mr. Sciberras said, and it’s unlikely there will ever be tall surrounding structures to block the light. As for parking, “in our neck of the woods, that is a big selling point.”

    Now with a glass awning, the building has a laundry room on each floor as well as a shared gym and garden. The ground floor will have retail and commercial space. Community Board 1 has already signed on as one tenant.

    After Stern’s began its long decline, there was talk of turning the building — which has been vacant for nearly three decades — into an all-night supermarket, or into rental or retiree housing. Plans stalled 10 years ago when Nikos Kefalides, then the building’s owner, died in the crash of Swissair Flight 111. The Pistillis bought it from his estate.

    Astoria’s other piano factory, simply called the Piano Factory Condominiums, was formerly owned by Sohmer & Company. The condo-conversion plan is awaiting approval by the state attorney general, with sales expected to begin sometime in the winter, according to the developer, Angelo Acquista of the TTW Realty Group.

    There will be around 70 apartments, from studios to three-bedrooms. The cost will most likely start around $650 per square foot, with penthouses reaching $900 per square foot. There will be a gym and pet spa; each unit will have a washer-dryer hookup.

    A two-story underground structure behind the building will provide parking for around $200 a month. Sales will be handled by Shawn Williams and Violet Boe of Prudential Douglas Elliman. Prospective buyers can sign up for information at Pianofactorycondos.com.

    The building, circa 1886, is known for its mansard-roofed clock tower. After Sohmer was sold in 1982, the property was acquired by the Adirondack Chair Company, a wholesaler of office and institutional furniture, and sold to TTW Realty three years ago. (Sohmer pianos are now made in Korea.)

    Over the last quarter-century, there were several failed attempts to confer landmark status on the building; that goal was finally achieved last year. Its German Romanesque Revival style includes “window patterns and monumental brick facades” that convey “a solid image,” according to the Landmarks Preservation Commission.

    The clock has been restored, Mr. Acquista said, and is now “accurate to the second.”


    Copyright 2008 The New York Times Company

  9. #24
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    I live in Astoria, its nice to see some of these old places getting renovated.

  10. #25

    Default Kaufman Astoria Studios in Queens broke ground Monday

    October 20. 2008 2:33PM

    New sound stage for New York

    Kaufman Astoria Studios in Queens broke ground Monday on its long-awaited expansion.

    Miriam Kreinin Souccar

    Courtesy: Kaufman Astoria Studios

    After nine years of delays, Kaufman Astoria Studios—one of New York City’s largest film and television studios—on Monday broke ground on a $20 million expansion.

    The new building, which will be located diagonally across the street from Kaufman Astoria’s current building in Astoria, Queens, will house an 18,000-square-foot sound stage and 22,000 square feet of office and other support space like dressing rooms and a carpentry shop. It will be the studio’s seventh stage.

    The project was made possible through a $5 million grant from the city, administered through a funding agreement with the New York City Economic Development Corp., and $2 million in grants and loans from the New York State Empire State Development Corp.

    “The importance of diversifying our economy is more obvious today than ever, and continued investment in New York City’s entertainment industry is one of the ways we’ve been doing it,” said Mayor Michael Bloomberg, in a statement.

    The expansion comes amid a major production boom in New York City, thanks to the state’s decision last April to triple to 30% its tax incentive on production. The incentives have pushed a number of television shows and movies to choose New York over other locales. This season, for example, Ugly Betty—a TV show that is set in New York but had been produced in Los Angeles—relocated to New York. ABC’s new show Life on Mars and Showtime’s new series, Nurse Jackie, are currently filming at Kaufman Astoria.

    Hal Rosenbluth, president of Kaufman Astoria, originally announced plans for the building in 1999, but had to put them on hold after the events of Sept. 11, 2001.

    http://www.crainsnewyork.com/apps/pb...810209990/1084

    © 2008 Crain Communications, Inc.

  11. #26

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    There are a ridiculous amount of condos rising in Astoria. Too many to post.

    but the park is nice...










    The Astoria skyline?


    Last edited by Derek2k3; May 2nd, 2009 at 10:26 AM.

  12. #27

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    looks like the beginnings some scandinavian district

    Quote Originally Posted by Derek2k3 View Post

    The Astoria skyline?

  13. #28
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    Good to see shots of Astoria!!!! Its my neighborhood, go to that park all the time!

  14. #29

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    11-24 31st Avenue is looking great. I love the spiraling crown and the curved bricks. Its one of the better residential built in the entire City in the last decade. Astoria has two great projects that have really gone under the radar, this and the Dutch Kills Holiday Inn. I wonder how units are selling at this one though, its near Socrates Park but the location leaves alot to be desired, its still mostly industrial and not in the immediate vicinity of the subway.

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    I think Astoria Park is a major park in need of renovation. Considering all the money going into new waterfront parks, it seems renovation and maintenance of existing parks ought to have some priority.

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